NASA is eager to hear from its silenced Mars rover, Opportunity, as the planet’s red skies clear.
Flight controllers have been on the alert for a message from Opportunity ever since a dust storm enveloped Mars in June and contact was lost. The storm has finally diminished. That means the sky is now clear enough for Opportunity’s solar panels to receive sunlight and fire back up.
But NASA this week warned it may never hear from Opportunity again. If there’s no word back in the next couple of months, NASA says it will cut back on its listening effort. Even if a message does get through, that may be the most the rover can muster.
The 15-year-old rover has been mute since June 10.